Experiment in isolation: Refraction of light

Almost four months after the start of the confinement and the social distancing program caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus (Covid-19), it has been found that it never hurts to look for creative activities to take advantage of free hours and The best thing is that there are plenty of options to have educational fun at home even in isolation and that could even be done before this situation: the classic science experiments.

Learning about science is important to become an innovative person, because it is the heart of knowledge, and it teaches us to observe how things work in this world. Specifically, Physics experiments greatly help us to realize the behavior of things even without seeing it with the naked eye.

What is light refraction?

The activity that we will see this time is about the refraction of light; It is perfect for children and can be done with objects that we have at home. When light travels from one transparent medium (air) to another (such as water), the speed of light is lower and, when it reaches water, it changes its direction a bit, which we call “refraction”: simple but unusual.


  • paper
  • A bookmark.
  • A glass or glass jar.


  1. Ask the children to fill the glass or glass pitcher with plain water.
  2. Take a piece of paper and ask them to draw something they like.
  3. Place the glass in front of the paper and adjust them until the image can be seen clearly through it.
  4. Now ask them what they see (example: some change of address).

As a result, you will see aberrations or blurring through the glass because the light wave traveled from the image to the water and then from the glass to the air and to our eyes. The glass works like a magnifying glass, which focuses the light towards the focal point (near the center), causing the image to look mirrored or warped. Take the test!

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